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The Ed Show

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Us 13, Pennsylvania 11, United States 9, Joan Walsh 7, America 7, Eric Cantor 6, Robert Greenwald 6, Lawrence Korb 6, Pakistan 5, Obama 5, Washington 4, Wisconsin 4, Iowa 4, Glenn Beck 3, Mr. Korb 3, Romney 3, Texas 3, Massachusetts 3, Michigan 3, John Kerry 2,
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  MSNBC    The Ed Show    News/Business.  (2013)  

    February 5, 2013
    8:00 - 9:00pm PST  

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standard. is that the kid that you met? has she been this way from the start of her public discussions of these things? >> she is incredibly articulate, i was enamored of her preparation, i still remember the first day i met her and her father. her father is a poet, a man who loves literaure, she is so deeply influenced by his idealism. and his nature. being around them in 2009, when i first met them women were banned from shopping in her hometown. it was a very tense time. people were being murdered in the main square. and yet they were able to not just have the courage to let a foreign journalist such as myself in their life to document them, but they were able to take a step back on the balcony and
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reflect so eloquently about their situation. and adam, how worried is malala about her future? surely she is still threatened? >> well, yeah, there have been several threats directed towards her and her father. but this is old news, when i was with them in 2009, during the war and when the taliban ruled the valley, her father's name was announced on the fm airways, and death threats were issued against him. so now, good evening, americans, and welcome to "the ed show" from new york. eric cantor has a new tube of lipstick, but it's the same old pig. this is "the ed show." let's get to work. >> our solutions will be based on the conservative principles of self-reliance, faith in the
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individual, trust in family, and accountability in government. >> the new and improved republican party takes another crack at repackaging bad ideas for america. tonight, i'll take eric cantor's speech apart, word by word. house republicans reveal their plan to reform immigration. it's not a path to citizenship. it's a path to permanent underclass. >> mr. issa is recognized for five minutes. >> i'll have all the latest on today's big hearing. plus, an explosive new document obtained by nbc news reveals the united states government's justification for killing american citizens without due process. tonight, robert greenwald, lawrence korb, and joan walsh on the obama administration's constitutional drone crisis. and just when you thought republicans were done planning to steal elections, you will not
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believe the stunt they are about to pull in pennsylvania. good to have you with us tonight, folks. thanks for watching. another day, another relaunch of the republican party. but this time i think the republican house leaders showed exactly who the republicans really are. >> house majority leader eric cantor will be outlining a new agenda for his party, focusing on issues like education and health care and spend less time talking about the deficit. >> really? oh, yes. eric cantor to the rescue. he is ready to save the republican image and put a stop to the electoral college losses, right? of course, this is not the first time eric cantor has tried to save the party. you see, it actually is the fourth attempt that he has had. in 2009, cantor held a pizza party, remember that? with jeb bush and mitt romney by launching the national council for a new america that didn't work. a year later, cantor was back at it.
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he was one of the young guns ready to take the republican party by storm. >> there is a better way, and a new team is ready to bring america back. eric cantor, kevin mccarthy, paul ryan joined by common-sense conservative candidates from across the country. together, they are ready to make history. together they are the young guns. >> the good old days. in 2011, cantor launched the you cut program. he wanted to get the public to vote on weekly cuts to federal government. another year, another failure. so today cantor launched the "making life work" campaign. he is trying desperately to avoid the republican brand. >> the average american is not thinking about and trying to wonder about where the republican party is. they're thinking about how to make their life work, which is exactly what we're talking about here today. >> so cantor offered americans a warmed over speech filled with a few policy ideas. well, the highlights cantor
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advocated were, let's see, mitt romney's tax reform plan. mitt romney's education reform plan, and unworkable cuts as usual to medicare and medicaid. not surprisingly, cantor was not willing to get specific about any legislation to make these ideas a reality. >> we do intend to follow up with some policy proposals in legislation working with our committees to move forward on many, many of these issues. >> it's always the follow-up, isn't it? but there was one thing cantor said today that really caught my attention. here it is. >> our solutions will be based on the conservative principles of self-reliance, faith in the individual, trust in family, and accountability in government. >> there is a lot there, isn't there? cantor sounds like he is fresh off another frank luntz seminar. i couldn't believe my ears when i heard those words come out of cantor's mouth. so let me make sure i got this whole thing correct. "our solutions will be based on the conservative principles of self-reliance, faith in the individual, trust in the family,
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and accountability in government." hmm, i could diagram this on the big board. my mother was a high school english teacher. but let's break down this sentence piece by piece, okay? based on the conservative principles of self-reliance. well, eric cantor, he must be so self-reliant that he really doesn't need corporate donations to get re-elected. he will certainly line up to help overturn the citizens united. he must be so self reliant that he doesn't need to rely on unlimited dark money to his campaign. yes, the republican party doesn't need to rely on heavily gerrymandered districts to give them a stranglehold on congressional seats. the self-reliant republicans, they don't need to suppress democratic votes with last-minute changes to voting rules. nah. they don't need to target minority voters when they are trying to win elections.
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they can just win on these big ideas that cantor was talking about today. this is what eric cantor means when he says "self-reliant." and then the next part of his quote really got me, "faith in the individual." i wonder what that means. i guess the republican party suddenly has faith in women that they're going to be able to make their own health care decisions. now they have faith in workers as well in the workplace to go ahead and organize to help raise the living standard of wage earners across the country. we certainly don't want the take away their voices in the workplace. in reality, republicans don't seem to have any faith in america. if they had faith in america, they wouldn't try to take way workers' rights or mandate women's health care measures. let's skip to the last part of cantor's quote, which is "accountability in government." this is the dandy. remember this, accountable party.
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just tried to strike down the guiding principle of one person, one vote. would an accountable party let the corporate tax rate plummet like this over decades while income inequality takes us right back to the vulture chart, which is at an all-time high, income inequality? in fact, the only time the republican party has shown an interest in self-reliance and faith in the individual was basically last month when house republicans voted against a bill for relief money for the victims of hurricane sandy. the gop had faith in these individuals, you see, that they could just survive on their own. eric cantor is now launching a listening tour, how about that, to hear concerns of regular americans. this is a total farce. i would really like to see somebody stand up at one of these listening tour gigs and ask eric cantor why house republicans did not vote for disaster relief for the folks in the northeastern portion of the united states. the bottom line is this is just a clever way for eric cantor to package the lack of vision in the republican party.
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they can't rely on their principles. they have to rely on empty slogans and bogus speeches, and this is the fourth try. eric, maybe you can hit for the cycle. and i don't even like baseball. get your cell phones out. i want to know what you think. well, i do like baseball. what do republicans need to fix? text "a" for their policies. text b for their image. and we've got a new number to text, 67622. and you can always go to our blog at ed.msnbc.com. we'll bring you the results later on in the show. i'm joined tonight by eugene robinson, msnbc political analyst and associate editor and pulitzer prize winning columnist for the "washington post," and bob shrum, professor of public policy at nyu and contributor to the daily beast. gentlemen, you're the two perfect guests for this subject. we've got to -- we don't have to unpack the republican party. we have to pack 'em into a box and see if they can sell this stuff again. eugene, is there any chance, or should i say is there really any change that there is going to be
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a change in substance of what the gop is trying to repackage to the american people? it sounds like a lot of the same stuff. >> well, ed, let me start by being as charitable as i can possibly be. the old proverb a journey of a thousand miles begins with one step. this is one very small step. it was a speech that had a lot of nice words. but you're absolutely right in that it said nothing about the policies that the republican party espouses and continues to espouse that are ejected by large majorities of the american people. you know, people get what the party stands for, and they don't like it. so it's a step, a little step, but it has to be followed up by the kind of action that i'm not sure eric cantor can bring about. i'm not sure the sort of establishment wing of the party has that sort of juice anymore. >> he just didn't come across as a heavyweight today. and i don't know who that person is in the republican party. bob, how do you change a party?
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who is responsible for that? how do you change it? >> well, look, these folks made a deal with the devil, not just in 2010 in terms of exploiting the tea party, but in 2004 where they used abortion and marriage equality to turn out the religious right. now the tea party and the religious right are less and less powerful in america and more and more powerful in the republican party. you know, when i listen to cantor, i thought this guy must have majored in cosmetology while he was in college, because all he is offering right now is a cosmetic change in the republican party. you can't stop being the stupid party if you keep standing for dumb things. how does he explain the house of representatives which is blocking the violence against women act? changing that wouldn't be just a baby step that would be a step that would tell us that maybe
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the republican party is beginning to get it. >> well, he did appear to come out in support of the dream act today. here it is. >> it is time to provide an opportunity for legal residents and citizenship for those who are brought to this country as children and who know no other home. >> and of course, for the record, kantor has actually voted against the dream act when it came to the floor. eugene, is this just political pandering at its best? >> well, it sounds like it. clearly there are people -- i wouldn't necessarily have counted eric cantor as one of them. but there are some prominent republicans who are arguing for some version of the dream act there is a faction that wants to move in that direction. you ask how do you change a party. remember, there was a time when the democratic party was seen as being out of the american
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mainstream, and a group of centrist and moderate democrats formed the dlc and in many ways did succeed in bringing the party back to more of where the american people were. and had tremendous success because of that. that sort of organizational systematic effort inside the republican party to move it away from the far, far right, i'm not going to believe that -- in this rhetoric. >> i think they could work on their sincerity. and they could show up in prime time on msnbc on any of the shows and try to win over the folks that don't believe them. that would probably be a good start. one person who liked cantor's speech was karl rove. he promoted it on twitter as it was all unfolding. bob, is rove trying to become the architect of the party again? and of course he is going at it on the right-wingers as well. >> well, he doesn't have much choice, you know. he set up this new effort in american crossroads to try to
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influence gop primaries. and i'm not in the business of defending karl rove. but if i could take a leaf from gene robinson's book and say this is a kind of step that makes sense if you want to elect republicans. but the problem is with the dominance of the tea party types, the religious right, and a lot of these states you're going to see more republican nominees who are going to lose winnable races. rove wants to change that, although he is the one who contributed to creating it at almost every level over a long period of years. >> eugene robinson, bob shrum, great to have you on the program tonight. thank you so much for joining us. remember to answer tonight's question there at the bottom of the screen. share your thoughts on twitter at edshow and on facebook. we always want to know what you think and appreciate that. massachusetts republicans, let me tell you, folks, they are so desperate to win john kerry's senate seat, they might even give glenn beck's tv psychiatrist a shot. that's next. stay with us. it's delicious. so now we've turned her toffee into a business. my goal was to take an idea
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tonight, major fallout following the bombshell reflation of a justice department document that gives
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legal cover for the targeted assassination of american citizens using drones. republicans aren't backing off their attempts to rig the next election. now pennsylvania is in their crosshairs. and house republicans are stalling on immigration reform. i'll explain why their plan would create a permanent underclass in this country. share your thoughts with us on facebook and on twitter using #edshow. we're coming right back. [ roasting firewood ]
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looking too good. the filing deadline for the special election to fill the seat of senator john kerry is february 27th. now this was supposed to be a real good opportunity for the republicans to get a pickup here. former senator scott brown picked up the seat of deceased senator ted kennedy three years ago. but what a difference a few years makes. brown has since been defeated, and he says, well, he is not interested in this special election thing. former massachusetts governor william weld, he has also said no. tagg romney says i'm making too much money. the son of the former gosh and the former presidential candidate says no, it's the cash. these are not the only republicans who have passed on the opportunity to pick up a democratic seat. former state senator and a former lieutenant governor have also said no. the latest entry is fox news personality keith ablow, who is probably best known as glenn beck's tv psychiatrist. >> i did not evaluate joe biden, but if someone said to me listen, we want you to do what
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is really required to know what happened there, you have to put dementia on the differential diagnosis. get your own white board like glenn beck, right? because you've got to immunize yourself. because when i was on his show back at cnn when we first met, i was amazed by how willing he was to come forward with his pain. >> pain! that's the key. dr. ablow says he will only declare his candidacy if no other republican challenges him. he wants a clean slate. state representative dean winslow says he is forming an exploratory committee. massachusetts republican strategist says, i think it's close to a lost cause. most people, including the "b" tier candidates felt scott brown had a chance to win the special election, but no other republican probably did. let's turn to democratic strategist chris kofinis. chris, great to have you with us tonight. >> thank you. >> it's just a good collection, isn't it? >> dr. ablow, i think he needs a psychiatrist.
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>> well, he would be interesting on the senate floor if he ever got that far. >> oh, not going to happen in this lifetime. >> all right. is this the republican party can do? or is there somebody really waiting in the wings and it's a timing issue and just hasn't stepped out saying hey, i want this seat? >> this is the best they can do. it's a reflection of where the party is. by the way, in the northeast of the united states, california, the republican party is a dinosaur. it's extinct. and it's becoming more so because their policies and their national message is alienating the very voters they need to win in places like that. but they're actually having bigger problems in places like iowa, which i would consider a toss-up, or places like alaska where in that senate race it looks like joe miller is going to run again. and you have -- he is going to go up against a senator, senator begich, who is very popular, and he is already behind in the
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polls that have come out. so they're having problems all over the place, even in states where they arguably should be very competitive, if not leading. >> they should be doing better in iowa. republicans were pretty excited about iowa, senator tom harkin leaving. but polls show the leading republican congressman steve king gets beat by any likely democrat. this a surprise? what do you think? >> it's a surprise in terms of iowa, having done some work there, it's a rural state. it's not the northeast of the united states. it's not massachusetts. but they're also very progressive, and they're also a good judge of character. they kind of see through the game, if you will. and i think the state has changed over the last four or so years. it's kind of moved if you will more to the center, more to the center left. and candidates like congressman king and others just don't i think reflect the values of the preferences of the state. >> now, on the national level, there is new jersey governor chris christie. let's take a look at his appearance on david letterman. >> i've made jokes about you, not just one or two. not just ongoing here and there, intermittent. >> i didn't know it was going to
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be this long. >> joking aside, christie has an innate ability to know the room and be the regular guy. and isn't this what the republican party is lacking right now? i mean, they've got an identity crisis. why not start with the regular guy next door? is he the best bet they have? >> to some extent, the problem is how does he get through if he runs for president, how does he get through that republican primary. the party right now is dominated by a clear faction on the right that thinks their policies are the right ones for the country. there is no negotiation, no compromise whether that's on immigration, whether that's on taxes, whether it's on social issues. the problem that they ignore and the groups in the tea party in the far right ignored is the country has moved. it's moved more to the middle. it's moved in a more progressive direction. and they don't want to change. and the mistake the republicans keep making at the national level is they think this is a branding problem. this isn't a messaging problem. they have the wrong policies for
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the country. and until you come up with new policies, they're going to continue to be in this tortured state. >> but wouldn't christie be their best chance? i mean, if you wanted to get some moderate voters or possibly some independent voters, i mean, self-deprecation goes a long way in politics. >> if you want to win at the national level and have a guy that can go into, you know, all walks of life and meet all different types of people and be able to connect, chris christie is a very charismatic guy. he knows how to talk to different folks. he would be their best bet. but i think he's got about as much chance as i do of winning the republican nomination. >> okay. i think they're doing all this playing around with gerrymandering and also electoral colleges because they know how strong hillary would be to beat. the only way they would even have a chance is to rig the field that of course is a different subject we'll do another day. >> i think you're right about that. >> chris kofinis, great to have you with us tonight. thanks for coming. coming up, house republicans held a hearing on immigration reform today. folks, it wasn't pretty.
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one of their ideas could create a whole new underclass of americans. i'll bring you the details. and later, a look at the government document making the case for killing americans suspected of terrorism. our panel weighs in. robert greenwald just back from pakistan, joan walsh with us tonight, and lawrence korb. we'll talk about president obama's drone war. i gave birth to my daughter on may 18th, five days later, i had a massive heart attack. bayer aspirin was the first thing the emts gave me. now, i'm on a bayer aspirin regimen.
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welcome back to "the ed show." since the november election, one
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thing everything in washington agrees on is something has to get done on immigration reform. last week we did see some consensus in the senate on a path to citizenship for 11 million undocumented workers in this country. today we found out what the house republicans want to do, and folks, it isn't pretty. they're considering creating a permanent underclass of americans who are not entitled to the same rights as everybody else in this country. now, the republican judiciary chairman robert goodlatte made it clear the house is in no rush to pass immigration reform. then he asked what he called the question of the day. >> are there options that we should consider between the extremes of mass deportation and a pathway to citizenship for those not lawfully present in the united states? >> republican congressman lamar smith of texas had a similar question. >> do you see any compromise area between the current status quo and a path to citizenship for virtually all the 11 million or more illegal immigrants in
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the country today? >> so house republicans are floating the idea of a permanent working underclass in this country. they don't want to deport undocumented workers, but they also don't want to grant them citizenship. republicans think this idea is middle ground. but it's really a scam to keep labor and wages really cheap. and votes off to the side. meanwhile, some republicans want to separate highly skilled workers into a separate bill. alabama congressman spencer bachus said this has a better chance of surviving at the republican-led house. >> my point is, and i think each of you would agree, it's going to be a much easier lift to solve the problem with highly skilled workers. >> then you have republican congressman kerry bentiviolo who says what you're seeing here is a shameless political ploy to
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buy new voters. democrats want the votes and republicans the cheap labor. immigration reform shouldn't be about buying off law breakers so they'll consider becoming republican. a little compromise in the senate, but basically over in the house, they are all over the map, and that's their plan because they don't want immigration reform, because that would make president obama look good. it would help out the democratic cause. and of course, the republicans are all about having everything tied to elections. there is a lot more coming up in the next half hour of "the ed show." stay with us. >> these strikes are legal, they're ethical, and they're wise. >> nbc news blows the lid off the administration's drone policy. up next, robert greenwald, joan walsh and lawrence korb on the white house's justification for
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killing american citizens without due process. the countdown to recession is on, and republicans are perfectly happy to let it happen. we'll take you inside today's war of words between president obama and speaker boehner over the sequester. and just when you thought republicans were done planning to steal elections, you will not believe the stunt they are about to pull in pennsylvania. did you know not all fiber is the same?
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when she's happy, she writes about bunnies. when she's sad, she writes about goblins. [ balloon pops, goblin growling ] she wrote a lot about goblins after getting burned in the market. but she found someone to talk to and gained the confidence to start investing again. ♪ and that's what you call a storybook ending. it's not rocket science. it's just common sense. from td ameritrade. they have been very precise precision strikes against al qaeda and their affiliates. >> that was president obama last month defending the drone program. in his four years in office, the president has made unprecedented use of this weapon, with more than 400 cia strikes against targets in pakistan and yemen. that's eight times as many as under president george w. bush. and now nbc news's michael isikoff has obtained a 16-page
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justice department memo that makes the legal argument to justify this administration's use of drones to kill terror suspects, including american citizens. the government can order the killing of its own citizens without due process if those citizens are believed to be senior operational leaders of al qaeda or an associated force, even if there is no intel indicating they are involved in an active plot to attack the united states. today attorney general eric holder addressed the issue. >> we only take these kinds of actions when there is an imminent threat, when capture is not feasible, and when we are confident we are doing so in a way that is consistent with federal and international law. >> yet, according to the memo, the government gets to define the word "imminent" in a very broad way. the condition that an operational leader present an imminent threat of violent attack against the united states
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does not require clear evidence that a specific attack will take place in the immediate near future. for the feasibility of capture, that too is broadly defined by the government. the decision to capture or kill can be made in a case-by-case basis. today, the white house declined to discuss the memo in detail, and spokesman jay carney defended the drone program. >> these strikes are legal. they are ethical, and they are wise. >> let's turn to our panel tonight. robert greenwald of brave new films. joan walsh is also joining us tonight, salon.com, and lawrence korb, senior fellow at the center for american progress. i have to say, as an american citizen, we are all entitled to due process under the law. and this document gives the president the ability to act as judge, jury and executioner. i'm troubled by it. it doesn't meet the moral or the constitutional standard that we
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expect of any administration. and i have to say that liberals have come certainly a long way to crying about the fisa court and patriot act and listening in on conversations to taking out innocent people around the world. we're losing the moral high ground by doing this. and even more troubling, there are people in washington who are ominously silent and not questioning this process and willing to stand behind the legal opinion of the justice department. this is president obama's legacy right now. it is dangerous. reaction to the memo. let's turn to joan walsh tonight. joan, your thoughts on this. >> ed, i think you pointed to the section of the memo that really is the most troubling, that this idea of imminent danger, which you can imagine as in our own country a hostage situation or a terror threat where a police officer really it's okay that he last resort kills someone.
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but when you see it defined as you don't need clear evidence, it doesn't have to be an actual specific attack, and it doesn't have to be in the immediate future, it really could justify just about anything. and, you know, i'm somebody who voted for this president twice. and i think a lot of liberals have one reaction is well, i trust the guy, but we can't allow our presidents to be judge and jury like this. and the other thing, i think the bottom line here for virtually everybody would have to be that there is no real either judicial or legislative review, not even after the fact. >> yeah. >> we can't even get those memos or white papers from the government. it was leaked to michael isikoff. so, you know, i think there is going to be a lot more questions about this in the days and months to come. >> no doubt. lawrence korb, your thoughts on what attorney general eric holder said today. he said it's consistent with international law are we sure about that? >> i think it is.
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i don't think you can use citizenship as a way to hide behind planning a terrorist attack on the united states. one can argue what is an imminent threat. the fact of the matter is people who are with al qaeda or associate groups are planning attacks on the united states. and what this memo does, and the attorney general mentioned it i think today over and above previous attempts to define this, they said not just the laws of war. not only does it have to be imminent, but there has to be no other way to get them. in other words, that you can't capture using americans. and this is mainly for people in foreign countries. we're not talking about the united states. >> yeah. >> and when you're waging war in a foreign country -- and remember, that the congress authorized the use of military action against al qaeda and its affiliates back in 2001. the justice department or the
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courts don't review your acts when you're waging war in a different country. >> but this can be done and ordered on people who do not sit in the oval office, by people who, you know, mr. brennan and how far down does it go? to a general? to a colonel? and there is no due process here whatsoever. and i'm curious. robert greenwald, your thoughts. why wasn't this memo released to the public by the obama administration? >> the obama administration is doing everything in its power to keep every single aspect of this disastrous and horrific policy of assassinating people in other countries. they're doing everything they can to keep it hidden. >> assassinating? you're saying -- you're saying assassinations are taking place? is that what you call it? >> yes, that's what i'm calling it. with people around the world who have not been tried by a jury, there has been no evidence against them, and we are
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guessing, remember this, we are guessing this and accusing them of things that we have absolutely no firm evidence about. i was in pakistan. i spent a lot of time talking to people, ed. we've talked about this. it's heartbreaking on a moral level, and it's absolutely disastrous on a security level. >> i'm surprised that there are veteran senators that aren't troubled by this. joan walsh, where is the chairman of the senate judiciary committee, pat leahy. it seems he would take great interest in what is unfolding here. we're losing the moral high ground by doing this. you could argue that. >> well, i think this is going to be a subject for the confirmation hearings of john brennan, certainly. and i think one of the other issues that the white paper brings forth is it doesn't have to be the president making this decision. it just refers to an informed high-level administration official. that's worrisome too. so i think that this white paper just makes it seem as though the standards that even that we
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thought existed for this program don't really exist. and i think, you know, as mr. korb suggests, we face enemies and the congressional authorization of military force really did give the president a lot of latitude, president bush. but it's been unfortunate to see a democratic president who actually opposed the authorization himself, though he wasn't in the senate, use it and take it farther than his predecessor. because this is way further than anything president bush did that we know of. >> mr. korb, what about the oversight on this? i mean, mr. greenwald says that we're assassinating people. your thoughts. >> first of all, i think the attorney general made that very clear today. acting in self-defense is not an assassination. the other thing is, yes, the president has the authority and he can delegate to it other people in the chain of command. but what we do know is the president has been intimately involved in making all the
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decisions, at least, you know, every time that something comes to light, whether it's bin laden or al awlaki, he has been right up there doing it. so he is very much involved. >> but the administration makes it sounds like there is no innocent people being killed. on the other hand, the president is ready to pass gun control legislation in this country if we can save one life. but yet it just seems like this administration is very callous and liberals are being dumbed down by this saying it's okay, we're fighting terror when we're kill mortgage than one person around the world with drone attacks. what about that? >> well, again, i think there is collateral damage. and that's why this memo talks about the laws of war. before you use military force, you have to look at whether in fact it's justified and the possible collateral damage. that's an issue that no matter you are using drones or you're on the battlefield, that's a decision that you have to make. >> where is the oversight? where is the oversight on this, mr. korb? >> well, i think basically congress ought to get more involved. i want all this stuff to be released. you know, i wish it didn't have to come out the way that it did. congress ought to step up.
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if they don't like it, they ought to repeal or put a time limit on that law they passed back in 2001. you know, i think that that's where we really have got to get it. >> one thing that jumps at me, is our security so fragile that we have to say hey, look, if you take out the bad guy and a few people on the side, don't worry about it. robert greenwald, that's what it sounds like the policy. >> well, unfortunately, again, the problem is they're hiding the policy in every possible way. look, we have killed 178 children, children, with the drone strikes. over 4,000 people have been killed. and a reminder to everybody, we're not at war with pakistan. so the war analogy is not a direct and possible one. i spoke to imran khan, who is running for president of pakistan. he said yeah, there are 100 bad guys and fanatics. you now have a million people in the tribal areas who hate you because you're killing their brothers and their sisters and their cousins. so i would argue on a security level in addition to a moral level this is disastrous policy, and it's going to haunt the
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administration until they change it and until we get the elected officials to change it. >> well, i think democratic senators need to step out and answer if this was the bush administration would they be so silent. robert greenwald, joan walsh and lawrence korb, thanks for the conversation tonight. up next, less than four weeks until sequestration cuts into effect, goes right into effect. could we be looking at another recession? we just might be if john boehner gets his way. stay tuned. great, everybody made it. we all work remotely so this is a big deal, our first full team gathering! i wanted to call on a few people. ashley, ashley marshall... here. since we're often all on the move, ashley suggested we use fedex office to hold packages for us. great job. [ applause ] thank you. and on a protocol note, i'd like to talk to tim hill about his tendency to use all caps in emails. [ shouting ] oh i'm sorry guys. ah sometimes the caps lock gets stuck on my keyboard.
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our economy right now is headed in the right direction, and it will stay that way as long as there aren't any more self-inflicted wounds coming out of washington. >> well, get ready, america. it look like the republicans would rather throw us into a self-inflicted recession rather than work with the president. in less than four weeks spending cuts are scheduled to kick in under the sequester. that's if president obama and congress fail to reach a budget deal. today president obama urged congress to pass a balanced short-term package to prevent
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the sequester from taking effect on march 1st. >> there is no reason that the jobs of thousands of americans who work in national security or education or clean energy, not to mention the growth of the entire economy, should be put in jeopardy just because folks in washington couldn't come together to eliminate a few special interest tax loopholes or government programs that we agree need some reform. >> and the president is correct there is no reason to put our fragile economy, our recovery in jeopardy. but before the president had even delivered his remarks, some republicans were out launching a preemptive strike. speaker john boehner issued a statement that seemed to take new revenue right off the table. "we believe there is a better way to reduce the deficit, but americans do not support sacrificing real spending cuts for more tax hikes." once again, republicans are willing to hold the fate of our economy hostage to protect the interests of who? the wealthiest americans. in the midst of a republican effort to rebrand, they're reminding the american public one more time exactly what and who they stand for.
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tonight in our survey, i asked you what do republicans need to fix? 94% of you say policies. 6% say their image. coming up, we're learning more about a new republican election strategy. find out which state could change the election rules and how it could hurt the democrats in 2016. stay with us. [ coughs ]
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and in the big finish tonight, republicans are proving once again they can't win with their ideas, so they're changing the rules of the election instead. you see, you do this when nobody is paying attention. president obama won six states controlled by republican governors and legislatures. as we reported last month, all six of those states started talking about real locating electoral college votes. they wanted to redistrict their way to victory. easy way to do it, right? but the national attention just scared them off. republicans in wisconsin, michigan, florida and ohio backed down. pennsylvania is the lone wolf. they are the lone holdout. the state's senate majority leader plans to introduce a bill to distribute the electoral votes based on the percentage of the popular vote. here is how it would help republicans. states like, for instance, oklahoma, south carolina, and
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texas could adopt this electoral vote plan and stay completely red. but look how the plan would have changed the blue votes for president obama in the last election. the republican plan would have grabbed six votes for romney in michigan, eight of pennsylvania's 20 votes would have gone to romney. and wisconsin's votes almost cut in half. well, pennsylvania republicans are doing exactly what their national chairman wants them to do. they want to change the rules of the game, no doubt. >> being a blue state is not a permanent diagnosis. no state is that reliably a blue state. but it's up to all of us to decide if we're willing to fight for these states. >> yeah, fight for them, you know, the good old-fashioned way, voter by voter. reince priebus believes voters shouldn't get to pick their leaders. instead, he wants republican leaders to pick their voters. pennsylvania's plan is the perfect solution for the republicans, and it's different
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from the last attempt. let's bring in ari berman, for the nation magazine. good to have you back. how effective is this? how different is it? >> it's a little different instead of having electoral votes on gerrymandered districts, it would be based on the popular vote. it's the same outcome. instead of barack obama getting all 20 in pennsylvania, he is going to get 11 or 12 under this new pennsylvania plan. it has the same effect. they're trying to accomplish through legislative trickery what they couldn't do at the ballot box. >> are they trying to disguise this as totally different from the last one? like this actually a lot more fair? they're going to make that case, i would assume? >> they're going to say it's not based on gerrymandering. everyone should have a say. if every state did this, that would be one thing. but we're talking about doing it only in states like pennsylvania, wisconsin and michigan, and not in state likes texas and georgia. so this is a recipe for keeping
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the red states red, but splitting the blue states. and that's what is so fundamentally unfair about this plan. it's not something that is being considered all across the country. it's only being considered in states that republicans control and that the president won in 2008 and 2012. >> it could have changed the dynamic how they campaigned if it was this way? >> absolutely. wouldn't have been a swing state in the same way. and that's what republicans have to consider. do they want to give up their status as swing states by implementing these plans. you just heard paul ryan in wisconsin say i like the fact that southwest a swing state. so pennsylvania republicans are basically admitting they can never win all the 20 electoral votes. the best they can do is get to eight or ten. and that's really an admission of defeat by the gop. >> how does this match up with the demographic problems the republican party has right now? the african-american vote, the latino vote? >> continues to suppress their votes.